The Emergence of a New Chinese Family Structure : Through Shifts and Adjustments
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The aim of this paper is to examine how the recent Chinese history has affected the structure of the traditional Chinese family. The traditional family created under thousands of years of dynastic rule has specific child rearing practices and educational goals that help to fit every new generation of Chinese children into Chinese society. However, this society has changed not just from historical events like the fall of the Qing dynasty, the Chinese civil war, the Great Leap Forward, or the Cultural Revolution, but also from new economic and social changes promoted by a non-dynastic government. These changes to society have enacted change on the family structure because a new family structure is needed to socialize future generations into a still forming, newer, society. However, China is a massive country, and while families in more urban areas have been forced to adapt to new demands, families in more rural areas have maintained many of their traditional beliefs and practices. What has resulted is a new family structure that aims to produce a new generation of children ready for a new society, existing alongside the structure of the traditional family.